BY DIVYASHRI PRASATH '23
Have you ever wondered how you can make the best of your summer by improving your skills in a real-world environment? Well, internships may be just what you’re looking for! Student internships provide hands-on experience and an in-depth exploration of specific career paths. Preparedness is crucial in life, and engaging in an internship can help you develop the key expertise needed for any future career. From internships, you can gain confidence, learn networking skills, and refine current skills by putting them to use under realistic conditions, such as the busy life in an office.
Through the benefits of internship opportunities, you can refine and expand your abilities. For instance, having career experience will give you an advantage in a specific field, as it provides deeper involvement in career exploration and development . In addition to gaining overall insight into a field, internships help you explore and develop proficiency in your areas of interest, as well as boost your confidence and networking skills. Internships help with self-improvement, as you can familiarize yourself with typical work challenges and determine the qualities that make a person best suited to that specific career. With first-hand experience, you can identify your own strengths and weaknesses and work to improve them.
Ultimately, when starting the search for the opportunity that best suits you, consider a few things. First, identify areas of interest, as this is an important step to finding the most beneficial internship experience. For instance, if you want to go into a STEM field, a research or lab internship can help you gain experience working in a lab setting. This is a great occasion to decide which opportunities will best suit you and which ones might be something outside of your personal focus. Whether you pick a situation that plays to your strengths or one that is focused on bolstering a weaker skill, all learning experiences come with benefits.
So, where can students start looking? There are many different types of internships available, either virtual or in-person, and for both, you need to present your best qualities to make your application stand out. Searching for options online is one of the best ways to find the perfect opportunity; some sites even offer direct student connections with an internship to make the search easier. For example, Internships.com is a great website to look for more information about specific internships and Idealist offers more internship opportunities and programs for students.
Overall, internships are one of the best ways to gain a better understanding of real-world workspaces. As a student, you don’t get much experience utilizing your skills in a more professional setting, but internships are a great option to help you explore your interests and feel confident when launching your career in the future.